Norwich v Arsenal: Freddie’s first team and the satisfaction of supporters

By Bulldog Drummond

Of course no one really knows what Freddie will do with the team line up today but the media are already telling him what he should do, and also predicting disasters to come, because Arsenal need another four players.  Out with the old, on the with same old complaints, whinging, whining, moaning, snide comments, back-stabbing and of course demands for change.

All we need now is the wonderful Arsenal Supporters Trust to get their notoriously inaccurate accountant on the job, postulating that Arsenal have millions of pounds secretly salted away in their bank account, ready to be given to the directors, and telling us that the club only has a few peanuts available to buy players and that we need a new manager, then we will be up and running in full Arsenal “supporter” mode once more.

Then in will come all the hangers on like RedAction, 7am kick off, Arseblog, Le Grove, Black Scarf Movement, Highbury Library, the Gooner, GunnersTown, Gunners blog, and She wore a yellow ribbon, who signed the notorious AST letter criticising the club, and we’ll be back round at the start of the circle with Freddie saying “screw this for a way of making a living” and agreeing with the notion already circulating in some areas that no one in his right mind would ever be wanting the job of Arsenal manager.

Of course the fans could stop this by ditching any engagement with the negative organisations listed above and instead just supporting the club.

But while we are waiting for that, what are the blog and papers saying by way of predicting a line up?   Red London goes with


Chambers – Holding – Mustafi – Tierney

Torreira – Xhaka


Pepe – Aubameyang – Lacazette

The Express is running with the breaking news “JUST IN: Arsenal open talks with Massimiliano Allegri after Unai Emery sacking” which seems a little out of date, and then quickly move on to


Bellerin Sokratis Holding Tierney


Guendouzi Xhaka

Ozil                             Lacazette


Football Talk (which brands itself “FT” these days, but isn’t the Financial Times) has a variation based on the same back line


Bellerin Sokratis Holding Tierney

Torreira Guendouzi

Pepe                    Ozil         Aubameyang


While Football Fancast manages to find a place for Willock…


Bellerin Chambers Holding Tierney

Willock Guendouzi

Pepe Ozil Aubameyang


The Guardian however has a twist in their line up


Bellerin Chambers Sokratis Tierney

Torreira Xhaka

Maitland Niles    Ozil  Aubameyang


I think that makes five different line ups from so-called experts (or was it six?  I may have lost count).  Does that mean that actually they don’t have any more of an idea what is going to happen than I do?  Probably.

But then if that’s so, what bit of the word “expert” do I not quite understand.

And that is the problem.   These “experts” don’t have a clue but they spend their time attacking Arsenal managers and their staff, and then eventually forcing them out of the club.

Remember, it was they who latched onto the idea of forcing Mr Wenger out.   How many more?

As a result of the endless bombardment of the manager, Arsenal went seven league and cup matches without a win for the first time in just on 25 years.  They never went on as poor a run during Arsene Wenger’s 1,235 games in charge.

And yet the media and some fans banded together to get rid of Mr Wenger.  Are they satisfied yet?  I doubt it.  They never are.  So let us help them look at their achievements.

This start to the season was worse than anything Mr Wenger achieved – yet they pushed him out.  Are they satisfied yet?

Arsenal trail the leaders by 19 points, a bigger gap than every happened under Mr Wenger, but they pushed him out of the club.  Are they satisfied yet?

Arsenal averaged 1.73 points per game during Mr Emery’s reign.  Far worse than anything under Mr Wenger.  Are they satisfied yet?

Maybe part of the problem is that in a measure of how clubs engage with their fans (The Fan Engagement Index Arsenal came 47th – pretty awful although above Manchester United (49th), Tottenham (51st) and Chelsea (73rd).

Are Arsenal satisfied with that?

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32 Replies to “Norwich v Arsenal: Freddie’s first team and the satisfaction of supporters”

  1. What has passed , has passed. So here is to a new begining, and wishing for the Arsenal to play with the style we had become accustomed to.
    Over to you Freddie , and the boys. Go get them
    Up the Gunners !

  2. Sadly I think POGMOL will see today as a wonderful opportunity to deliver the Coup de Grace.

    Lets hope I’m wrong. It wont be the first time.

    Good luck to Freddie and the boys. Onwards and upwards.


  3. The team (4-2-3-1):


    Chambers, Mustafi, David Luiz, Kolasinac;

    Xhaka, Guendouzi;

    Willock, Özil, Aubameyang;


    Subs: Martínez, Sokratis, Tierney, Torreira, Pepe, Saka, Martinelli

  4. Meanwhile the ladies are destroying Bristol being 9-0 up after 62 minutes….Every time Miedema touches the ball a goal is the result

  5. Bloody hell will wonders never cease.

    Lets not get too carried away though.

    Definite handball = Impossible to overturn.

    Definite encroachment = had to be re taken. A tad fortunate of course but it’s their own fault.

    Only what we deserved. Much the better side.

  6. McClean. Clear red card……..but not when it’s Arsenal. Guendouzi can hardly walk. Norwich score. After the penalty I had hopes that, for once, we had a ref who applied the rules. I shall carry on hoping.

  7. Looking at Ljungberg’s first Arsenal PL match starting XI this afternoon that has been made public, I can’t see any much difference between his own starts for our away match to Norwich in the PL and that which Emery, the former Arsenal boss started in our last home match against Southampton in the PL a week back. Save, Mustafi and Xhaka who Ljungberg has started in place of Bellerin and Torreria who started the Saints match. But has only Torreria out of the duo starting the match today from the bench. Pepe and Saka the two Arsenal specialist wingers are benched for the match. So, no natural Arsenal width in this match from the start. Anyway, my good luck wish match win to Ljungberg and the Gunners in this match.

  8. Well done Arsenal Women, top of the league when they needed to win by 8 goal difference, beat Bristol City 11-1. Miedema with 6 goals and 4 assists!!

  9. Not much support for Arsenal here, but there is some.

    Approaching midway through the second half, Aubameyang has tied the score up twice now. Fouls are supposedly 5:4, cards are 2:1. The foul on Guendouzi required a treatment. I am not keeping close data on treatments this season, but that might be the first treatment that produced a card to the assailant this season.

    Early in the second half, the butcher that took down Guendouzi, apparently equired treatment himself. Did he hurt himself in that “tackle”?

    Someone from Norwich decides it is Willock’s turn for a treatment. It mush have been a “good un” on Willock, as he has now been substituted.


    On the women’s game, they won 11:1. Miedema with 6 goals! Apparently she had 4 assists as well. That is apparently the biggest winning margin in WSL history. 10 days ago the Gunners beat this same opposition 7:0 in Continental Tyres Cup action. Shots were 32, 17 on target. They were 8 goals behind on goal diffference WRT Chel$ea and Man$ity. But, I would imagine those teams will also score goals later. We had 65% possession. Fouls were 2:1. BBC couldn’t provide a web page to display all the game commentary, and there were no cards in this end of the game snippet.

    Chel$ea game postponed due to frozen pitch, Man$ity leading 1:0.


    Benik Afobe is apparently at the Bristol City Mens team. His 2 year old daughter just died. My condolences.

  10. Only the 1 point today. Good try Gunners.

    More BS from PGMOL. Fouls are supposedly 6:11, and cards are 2:1. Norwich just getting “real mens fouls”, and Arsenal getting fouls like, “breathing on the opposition”.

  11. Overall I thought the ref had a decent game but still, and it’s a big but, that was a clear red card and if the ref missed it surely VAR should of picked it up?

    Also the hand ball. Was it even looked at?

    that aside a draw was a fair result in the end.

    We still need to sort out our vulnerability to the counter attack.

    Top 4 will be tough but with Chelsea losing at home it’s still on.

  12. There is some thing that Freddie must change. Playing out from the back. It is dire as our receiving players do not turn towards the opponents.

    Our attack is supposed to be good but something is missing ‘fire in the belly’. The shooting is soft and when hard it is usually at an opponent. Xhaka should be encouraged to shoot.

  13. Much better showing , but still a long way to go. More composure needed in the last pass , as well as better judgement.
    Please Freddie, work on the defence. Still very vunrable on the counter attack.
    Up the Gunners !

  14. One of those Neville hypocrits is making VAR noises, hoping Arsenal would lose.


    Someone I wrote is worded wrong. Walter, Nitram, Menace, Mikey, are all being supportive. It’s wonderful that a bunch of AAA didn’t post more crap here. But, it would have been nice to get 40-50 more positive comments.

  15. Two goals from Norwich from too passive defending from our part. We must improve on that aspect of our game. But attacking we did better. We should have been 1-0 up when they scored on a counter and a Lucky deflection. Still a lot of work needs to be done. The retake of the penalty was for me because of the Norwich player kicking the ball away after the initial save from the keeper was too early in the penalty area and thus took advantage of his foul.
    Our subs didn’t really got in to the match apart from Martinelli who showed himself more in his few minutes than Saka did.

  16. I do not write comments very often, cause I’m french and, even if I love english language a lot, I’m not good enough at it. Sorry for that.
    Today, I liked what I saw. A team playing … well, not Wengerball, but at least some nice Ljungbergball.
    Some more creativity, more speed in midfield when i comes to launch attacks.
    We’ve got possession, and (I can’t find the stats, Gord help me… 😉 ) seemingly more shots in one single match then we had in the last 3 or 4 ones.
    Freddie have been the boss only since three little days. Not bad!
    Let him do the job, there are some good reasons to get hope.
    About the media… It seems that sportive journalists are the same in France. L’Equipe says : “Pas mieux avec Ljungberg” (Not better with Ljungberg). They obviously need to buy glasses – or objectivity – as they don’t take into account that Freddie is in charge since a very short time, of course not enough to make real changes. And they keep silent about the kind of play the boys offerd us today, and don’t talk about the shots on goal Krul had to save…
    For the ref… no change. But what could we expect? Riley is still in charge…

  17. Walter, you’re right. Actually, seeing the replay, I saw to reasons for retaking the penalty:
    – Krul encroached the line.
    – And yes, At least 2 or 3 Norwich players were in the box at the moment Auba’s shot.

  18. A decent start from FL and the players. Considering the short time both have had, to adapt to the eruptions around them, we should be expecting even better matches going forward. COYG.

  19. “Unfortunate Norwich” says the BBC. Completely ignoring the fact that one of their goals was a fortunate deflection and the other was scored immediately after McClean should have been off (an incident they failed to mention).

    Also love the Norwich manager who reckoned they didn’t win one throw-in or one corner……..seriously, he’s quoted. Oh and he didn’t think the penalty should have been given or been re-taken. You’d really think as a premier league manager he would be able to see properly, count and know the basic rules of football.

  20. A win for Arsenal away to Norwich today’s afternoon in the PL would have unequivocally taken us the Arsenals to 6th in the table Instead of the 8th position that us are presently seen ourselves placed. Which should Man Utd win in their home match today against their opponent team in the PL, us the Arsenal will fall further behind to 9th in the table at the end of week 14 matches played in the Premier league. But will this 9th position in the table be where Arsenal should be seen placed in the table at the end of the proceedings in week no. 14 into the Premier League campaign this season? whereas normally Arsenal should not be found to be languishing in 9th position in the table at this stage into the campaign in the PL this season. But should at least be in 3rd or in 4th position in the table at this stage into the campaign. But certainly not in the pathetic 9th position that they have gotten themselves placed in the table at the end of today’s proceedings in the Premier League matches which could pathetically see Arsenal placed in 9th position in the table. A situation that only Man Utd could acknowledge or fail to. I think if Arsenal are placed on 9th in the table today, it won’t look it is the English Premier League Arsenal that they are placed on 9th in the table at week no. 14 into the campaign but it’s likely to be Arsenal Tula in the Russian Premier League or the other Arsenal club in the Argentina Premier League that is on 9th in the table at the end of week no. 14 into their PL campaign. Enh?

  21. 94th minute winner with the assistance of VAR. for Leicester. And yet another game with no yellow cards for them. So, asit all evens out in the end, we card free until about Easter……

  22. I enjoyed watching that match on TV, so that’s a good start. Thanks Freddie! Lots of nice accurate passing and vigorous confident play. Plus Ozil on the pitch for most of the match.

  23. Mikey

    Leicester had a penalty overturned by VAR for what was not only a clear and obvious error, but a clear and obvious dive, yet not card was given to the Leicester player.


    Maybe Leicester City’s diving is just all part of the entertainment. I mean, it is Olympian standard.

  24. PGMOL – Law 3. Yellow cards are not shown to King Power people. It has a detrimental effect on the final result.

    Addendum to Laws on VAR a goal must be given to King Power people as it has been paid for.

    The Abramovic cruise is no longer available to WAGs of Pigmob but a Beatle tour is.

  25. We certainly live in paculiar times. Leicester City have certainly got a lot of clout somewhere within the Premier league.
    The double standards are quite staggering.

    On to our match and the tackle on guendouzi was a shocker and there was another nasty one which I think got a yellow however another team could easily have been playing with 9 men.

  26. I wonder how many times PGMO personnel have been holidaying in Thailand in the last few years? Did they spend any money while they were there (according to their English bank accounts)?

  27. Mikey, I think he was referring to the idea that if Bournemouth had of done those two fouls to Arsenal, they would have gotten 2 red cards and be two men short.

    —- typically copies in content from other sources. Their leading article is: Three things we learned from the Premier League.

    By and large, any headline which claims to have learned something about English football, hasn’t.

    The snippet at WorldFootball is apparently about Liverpool!1, leicester and the spuds.

    Liverpool!! have been annointed the next league winners by the medja, and PGMOL are doing what they can to see that happen. For Livepool!! to win, when PGMOL tilts the field for them is not news.

    Leicester won the league very improbably a few years ago. Lots of people have remarked about how poorly they have been doing since. PGMOL have apparently decided they will til the field for them, so that they can (possibly) come in second. Part of this, is that PGMOL are tilting the field to “help” Man$ity finish much lower.

    Last, we have the spuds. A media darling. For whatever reason, PGMOL are going to tilt the field for the spuds in the near term. I suspect the fact that the spuds have annointed the most obnoxious one as manager will come into play, and PGMOL will reduce how much they tilt becuase it is too hard for the most obnoxious one to not be obnoxious.

    Did anyone learn anything, in observing this? I don’t think so.

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